Siti graduated from Nanyang Polytechnic‘s Dental Hygiene and Therapy course. During her final year she and her team members carried out extensive research to invent a modified oral cleansing aid. As Singapore has an aging population, the dental aid was targeted to suit the needs of the elderly with compromised dexterity. This useful tool won her and her team the ‘Best Final Year Project’ Award. Siti is dually qualified as a Dental Therapist as well as a Dental Hygienist. She has gained work experience both in private and in the public health sector. She did her clinical training at Singapore’s National Dental Centre and the Health Promotion Board treating both adults and young patients. She has taken part in various oral health initiatives to educate school children as well as participated in outreach programmes to provide free dental screenings to the community. Siti is a member of the Oral Health Therapists Alumni, and is continually updating her skills and knowledge by attending continuing education courses.
Why a Dental Therapist/Hygienist?
During my primary school days there were three main occasions when I would feel annual pangs of excitement - my birthday, the overseas family vacation and the dental check-up in school! I knew it was that time of year for my dental check-up when the big dental bus arrived in the school compound. Not only was the bus brightly painted, there was nothing quite like it inside; it was packed with all sorts of fancy dental tools I had never seen. For the next few days I would sit in class and wait eagerly for my turn for a dental check-up. The Dental Therapist was a friendly lady with the warmest smile, every visit she would teach me something new. I learned how to floss, brush and take good care of my teeth. In exchange for my good efforts I would be rewarded with stickers and praise. I also enjoyed the conversations we had during my dental visit; the therapist showed genuine, tender loving care. These experiences aroused my interest in the profession and led me to pursuing this career myself. It was a nice surprise when I reconnected with the dental therapist who saw me as a child - she was a trainer in the dental hygiene school. We have maintained good ties ever since.